In the event that any uncertainties existed regarding his preparedness to participate in 50-over cricket following a 14-month hiatus from ODI competition, Ben Stokes promptly dispelled them at the KIa Oval. He achieved his fourth century in the format in a mere 76 deliveries, and subsequently proceeded to establish the highest score by an Englishman in said format with a remarkable 182 off 124, thereby facilitating a resounding triumph over New Zealand.
The journey of the individual in question is embellished with a span of four centuries and an impressive count of 22 half-centuries, achieved in a mere 93 innings. Notably, this feat was accomplished as the aforementioned individual made a return from retirement in One Day International cricket, a decision taken to fortify the English team’s defense of their World Cup title in India, which was just a month away. The individual’s sublime innings of 182, comprising of 15 boundaries and nine towering sixes, left onlookers in a state of awe and further cemented their status as a cricketing icon.
In addition to this personal milestone, the individual also secured a place in the record books by surpassing the previous record held by Jason Roy, as the highest run-scorer in a single ODI innings for England, with a score of 182.
England encountered early difficulties at 13/2, however, Stokes and the formidable Dawid Malan collaborated to revive the innings with a magnificent 199-run partnership for the third wicket. Stokes’ majestic 182 was complemented by Malan’s exceptional 96, followed by a crucial 78-run partnership with skipper Jos Buttler (38). Despite a collapse in the lower order, England managed to achieve a formidable total of 368 in 48.1 overs. New Zealand’s standout bowlers were Trent Boult (5/51) and Ben Lister (3/69), who accounted for the majority of England’s wickets.
In response, New Zealand’s top order crumbled under the relentless pace attack orchestrated by Chris Woakes, Reece Topley, and Sam Curran.
The New Zealand cricket team encountered a challenging situation when they were at 70/5, struggling to counter the aggressive bowling attack. Despite the efforts of Glenn Phillips (72) and Rachin Ravindra (28), New Zealand was eventually all-out for 187 in just 39 overs. The bowling prowess of Chris Woakes (3/31) and Liam Livingstone (3/16) was instrumental in England’s victory, with Topley, Curran, and Moeen Ali also making significant contributions. Ben Stokes was awarded the Player of the Match for his exceptional performance, leading England to a 2-1 lead in the series with one match remaining.
Stokes’ remarkable display has cemented his place among the legends of ODI cricket, and fans eagerly anticipate his upcoming performances in the World Cup in India. Trent Boult (5/51) and Ben Lister (3/69) were the standout bowlers for New Zealand, accounting for the majority of England’s wickets. Despite the resistance put up by Phillips and Ravindra, New Zealand’s top order crumbled under the relentless pace attack orchestrated by Woakes, Topley, and Curran.
Malan initially appeared to be a reserve player when England announced their preliminary 15-man squad a month ago. Following his exclusion from Trent Rockets in the Hundred and a lackluster T20I series, Malan’s position seemed uncertain, particularly with Harry Brook, who was initially left out, presenting a compelling argument for inclusion.